Sunday, July 10, 2011

What's Black and White and...

When not having a couple of glasses of wine and buying vintage shoes off Etsy, I've been reading about other sewists who actually sew. In my perusals, I came across this tutorial and thought: I can do that!

In the meantime, my two adorably annoying little girls have been wanting me to whip them up something on my machine. No, wait, they want to sew. No, wait, they want me to sew. And so on and on. My youngest daughter, with a memory like a steal trap said I said I would sew her a dress this weekend (or last?) and never did. She reminded me of my failure several times.

And then we made a trip to Jo-Ann Fabric. The one by me is fine, but the one I went to tonight with my mom, step-dad and two kids was out of this world. It was clean and the selection was much, much bigger. I think. It seemed that way, at least. I don't recall seeing shirting or suiting fabric at the one close to me, but it's possible that I've lost patience while wandering around. The home decor section was definitely larger.

Anyway, my kids 7 and 10, were bound and determined to get me to do or get for them. I looked them in the eyes and said, "I'm a selfish seamstress. I don't want to make a bunch of stuff for you because I want to make a bunch of stuff for me." I let them pick out one fabric each, while I picked out a couple for myself. I picked out one regular cotton and then hit the clearance section and remnants. I found a pretty green double knit and an embroidered cotton.

My oldest was so excited when we got home that she didn't give me a moment's peace from the second we walked through the door until I sat down with her. She has her own machine, a little purple Janome Blossom. When I found my patience floating around in a cold beer, I got her manual out and taught her how to wind her bobbin and thread her machine before setting her up to run practice stitches. Then I sent her to bed so I could sew my own thing. (Cue devious laugh.)

Following the tutorial mentioned above, I whipped up my own skirt. I cheated by not pre-washing the fabric, but my mom told me she skips this step occasionally and if she can do it, I think I can too. I just didn't want to wait. The style and print of the skirt are pretty forgiving, so any shrinkage shouldn't be a problem anyway. The only changes I made were use French seams on the side seams because I think they're pretty cool and to take a bit more than the recommended 2-3 inches from the waist length of elastic. I probably took about six off so it was tighter. I think it looks much better this way. I also sewed a hem. I was going to leave the selvages on, but there was stuff printed on them so I went ahead and hemmed. I didn't cut them off, which is a cheat in itself, though.

I don't know if it took me only 20-minutes, probably an hour, but it really didn't matter because it wasn't too long, it was easy and very rewarding to have a finished skirt so quickly.

I'll sew for my kids tomorrow. Probably...

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